Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Budapest in the Afternoon

We walked to the city center to find someplace for lunch. Naturally, we stopped at the Turkish restaurant
With a guy whose shirt says "Nice Tits Girl". The mouszaka is what drew us in, but we decided to go more exotic once we learned they were out.

Töltött Csirkemell (chicken with feta and tomato) with Turkish salad ( tomatoes, yellow pepper, cucumber, feta and olives).

The feta is so creamy!! So much better than the crumbly stuff I eat at home.

Stopping at Cafe Pausa for cappuccinos was an awesome idea. The cafe is located off of a pedestrian mall between the Octagon (an 8 sided intersection with 4 identical buildings on the corners) and the Danube.

Passing by the Chain Bridge and the Danube, resting a few moments in front of Parliament, we ventured to a bus station and flirted with the idea of public transit. Wisely, we decided to forgo the bus in favor of walking. Popping in and out of shops, we made our way back to "café row" for dinner and a beer at Menza.

Kacsamáj pástétom (duck liver pâté), Sütőtökös rizottó kéksajt (pumpkin risotto with blue cheese), Savanyú káposztával töltött ecetes paprika (pickled cabbage stuffed pickled peppers) and a Tuborg Gold.

After dinner, we went to the bath by Hero's Square via Metro. This proved more difficult than anticipated. Nobody we asked could tell us where the spa was, or maybe they had no idea what we were asking. Both are equally possible. Thankfully, we met a lovely Hungarian (she) and Italian (he) in the metro station. They overheard us struggling to buy a ticket, considerably more difficult when you don't actually know where you're going, and told us they were taking their friend to the very spa we were trying to visit and would be delighted to escort us.

I cannot communicate enough how beautiful the baths were. The buildings were baroque on the outside, beautifully maintained on the inner outdoor enclosure and the whole experience was lovely... aside from the locker rooms which smelled simultaneously of wet dog and feet. I'm not sure how that is really possible, but there you have it.

Getting a taxi home was a trial, but one of the men who worked for the spa called us a taxi and gave the driver a password to tell us so we knew it was the cab he had called instead of a "taxi cowboy" (an unlicensed taxi can driver). The ride home was understandably tense, but we arrived home safe and made a rule to never venture beyond walking distance from our hotel at night.

We leave for Vienna at 7am tomorrow!!

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